Targeted intervention and additional support
Statistically, children looked after achieve less well academically then that of their non-looked after peers. Therefore closing that gap is a clear priority of the Virtual School in partnership with the on roll school and others working with the young person. As part of that priority the Virtual School is responsible for monitoring the outcomes for children looked after and for supporting interventions to help improve outcomes.
We are determined that our children looked after will achieve their best possible outcomes and as a result we are consistently looking for new and innovative ways of supporting them. Below are examples of some of the targeted inventions and additional support that we put in place:
One to one/online tuition – if a school feels a child would benefit from further academic support in a specific subject they can refer that child for tuition. Lessons will be focused towards closing the gap and building confidence in subject areas. If you are a school and feel that a child looked after would benefit from one to one/online tuition please contact your virtual school officer.
Mentoring –the Virtual School are very aware that for some of our Children Looked After have experienced previous childhood trauma which will continue to affect their education. To help support these children we have a mentoring service available that focusses on breaking down those barriers to success.
The Letterbox Club - a programme which aims to inspire a love of reading and engagement with numeracy. It’s run by a reading charity called The BookTrust, in partnership with the University of Leicester.
Bullfrog Arts and the Virtual School offer a unique partnership to all of our children looked after. The sessions, which can be across all phases, are attachment aware and trauma informed inclusive music sessions. The aim is to help some of our most distressed children regulate their behaviour throughout the school day or during time spent in our city residential homes. Bullfrog offer a range of activities including:
- Taiko drumming - which is a Japanese form of drumming that is a fun and thrilling combination of rhythm, movement and energy.
- Peripatetic teaching - which consists of one to one support and tutoring on an instrument of a young persons choice.
- Taiko performance group - this group consists of 6 students who are working alongside the Philharmonia to create wonderful music with classical instrument and Taiko drums. This programme is so unique, not only to Leicester, but nationally (possibly even globally!!)
- The Singing Project – aimed at reception and year 1 pupils this project aims to give children who are joining a new class or school a sense of belonging.
The Ewe Project
- The Virtual School work in partnership with Leicester City Education Psychology Service to deliver the Emotional Wellbeing in Education Project (EWE Project). Schools can refer into this project with the consent of the child’s social worker. The programme offers bespoke support for Children Looked After to address barriers to education and can take the form of Theraplay, Art Therapy and talking therapies. The team also run a programme called WAVES which aims to support children and young people who have experienced loss, separation and bereavement.
Year 6-7 transition programme
The Virtual School work in partnership with the Psychology Service on a year 6-7 transition programme which is supported by our mentors. An outdoor education residential experience usually runs alongside this work.
- We provide a range of enrichment opportunities for our young people, most of which offer accredited awards. We have run the Arts Awards, University experience days, climbing courses and Tall Ships which is a residential sailing experience.
Aim Higher, Reach Further
Our enrichment programme feeds into our celebration event- Aim Higher, Reach Further. This is an awards ceremony where our students are recognised for their achievements. We usually have an inspirational, care experienced guest speaker to present the awards. In previous years, Lemn Sissay, Sir John Bird and Ashley John Baptiste have been involved in Aim Higher, Reach Further.
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